Francis Ford Coppola Disputes Winona Ryder’s Account Of Verbal Abuse On The Set Of “Bram Stoker’s Dracula”
One might rightfully call Winona Ryder a sticky-fingered vixen, but to call her a liar, as Mel Gibson did earlier this week when he disputed her account of an abhorrent antisemitic comment he allegedly made to her at a party, is not really fair. Especially coming from an unflushable turd with a long and well documented history of abhorrent antisemitic behavior. Now, according to People, Francis Ford Coppola has come forward to dispute another anecdote Winona shared in her recent Sunday Times interview.
Winona recounted that while filming a scene in Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Francis, the director, instructed the other actors to hurl abuse at her in an effort to make her cry. Francis says that’s not what happened at all. Instead, he told Gary Oldman to whisper “horrific and evil” things in her ear, which frankly sounds a whole lot worse. This is a guy who bent over backwards defending Mel back in the day saying “He got drunk and said a few things, but we’ve all said those things.” But do you have to say those things to Winona?!?!! Here’s what Francis had to say about it (via People):
“While I think Winona is a wonderful actor, the incident she described is not how it happened, and shouting or abusing people isn’t something I do as a person or as a filmmaker,” the director told PEOPLE in a statement.
“In this situation, which I remember clearly, I instructed Gary Oldman—in character as Dracula—to whisper improvised words to her and the other characters, making them as horrific and evil as he could. I don’t know what was said, but improvisation is a common filmmaking practice,” Coppola said.
Gary’s a nightmare in character as Gary (just ask his ex-wives) so I hate to think how terrifying he could be in character as an actual monster. Winona responded to Francis and says she agrees with his version of events. But also, she said what she said!
A rep for Ryder tells PEOPLE in a statement, “Winona and Francis are in agreement and his recollection is correct. He asked the actors, in character, to say horrible things to her as a technique to help her cry for the scene. Although that technique didn’t work for her, she loves and respects him and considers it a great privilege to have worked with him.”
What a gracious answer. It couldn’t have been a pleasant situation. In 2014, Gary lamented that political correctness meant that he wasn’t allowed to call Nancy Pelosi a “useless fucking cunt,” so I can’t imagine what venomous pearls were dripping from his pre-rehab lips back in 1992. I’d probably have slipped a little Hermes scarf into my bag after an ordeal like that myself. Anyway, as always, #Winona4Ever